Men Are Most Attracted to 20 Year Old Women. So What?

Men Are Most Attracted to 20 Year Old Women

I love big data.

While statistics can, theoretically, be used to prove/disprove anything, smart people can usually see through the lies to focus on the numbers.

Christian Rudder, president of OkCupid, is the guy who digs up the numbers from the millions of people using his free dating site. In his book, “Dataclysm,” he points out that who we want to be and who we really are can be two very different things. Data reveals truths that we might not want to say out loud.

While statistics can, theoretically, be used to prove/disprove anything, smart people can usually see through the lies to focus on the numbers.

In this 538 article about Rudder, the author recounts a presentation Rudder gave with graphs that illustrate the ages at which men and women find each other the most attractive. From the piece:

“Women who are, say, 28 find guys who are also 28 about the most attractive, and so forth. Up until about 40, when that’s getting too old.”

This is no surprise, much to the chagrin of 40+ year-old guys who swear that they have the same chance at the hot 28-year-old as they did 10 years earlier.

Of course, when you flip the data around and look at what age men find women most physically appealing, you get an appalling answer. Instead of the female curve, which suggests that 34-year-old women like 34-year-old men, men find 20 year-old women most physically appealing, no matter how old they were.

20 year old men prefer 20 year old women. 40 year old men prefer 20 year old women. It’s shocking to see on paper, but not so surprising if you’ve ever talked to an actual man, read a men’s magazine or looked at porn intended for men. This doesn’t mean that 40 year old men want to MARRY that 20 year old woman, only that they find her the most physically appealing. To tell men NOT to feel this way would be akin to telling them not to breathe.

I think we’d all be well served to pay attention to how people really act when no one’s looking instead of taking their word for it.

Now, I don’t always agree with all of the conclusions that Rudder draws from his OkCupid data. Once upon a time, he was trying to illustrate why free dating sites were “better” than paid dating sites, but it was clear that he was advocating for OkCupid. Regardless, big data is often very revealing about people’s real preferences – height, weight, age, income, sex, and so on.

The one problem with big data is that it removes the human element – and dating is very much about human connection. But the same way I try to lay out best practices for dating and relationships while allowing for many exceptions to the rules, I think we’d all be well served to pay attention to how people really act when no one’s looking instead of taking their word for it.

Your thoughts, below, are appreciated.

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  1. 1

    Great post. I think the attraction to 20 year olds is in large part biological. Men are attracted to women who are at their most fertile. Is doesn’t matter if the man is 50, already had kids, and has virtually no chance of being with a 20 year old. I once read that the reason blond women are perceived as most attractive by scores of men is that blonds have a slightly higher estrogen level than women with other hair colors. A similar concept and again, partly biological.

    1. 1.1

      You do realize that most blondes are NOT even real blondes. So I doubt you have any real data to confirm all your “points” here. And also about the old men looking at 20 year old women. I’m so glad I’m not a 20 year old woman anymore because I got every old, ugly, monstrous old man running after you cold think of. Jeez. Now I’m old and get YOUNGER men running after me, which is a little better because they’re cute.

      1. 1.1.1

        Lol this is so true. Those old men all seem so oblivious to the fact that they disgust young women. And that they’re seen as creepers.

        1. Ron

          REALLY??   We “disgust” those 20 somethings??   All I’ve dated in the past 3 years is 20 somethings because the over 40’s women disgust me with their jealousness and destructive, judgmental attitudes!

        2. MNRC

          @Ron: Yes, 20 year old women are extremely disgusted by 50 year old men. The 20-somethings you dated either wanted your money or have a daddy fetish, but you and all men would be wise to listen to the words that women are telling you. When we were 20 years old we were absolutely DISGUSTED by 50 year old men. Now, why would you want to keep chasing after women who want to hurl up their lunch at the thought of sex with you. It’s disgusting. Trust us.

        3. Man

          @Bridget @MNRC Don’t worry there are just as many younger men that think Cougars are just as disgusting. Not all girls date older men for their money that’s a total generalization. They might just like the sex. Anyway who cares? You can vomit up your lunch and guess what? They get on with their lives. Just because you think it’s so DISGUSTING doesn’t mean all 20 year old girls don’t  want to chase after older men.  Just because you think your or your circle of woman friends words are wise doesn’t magically make them so. They can do what they want as long as it’s legal. And no I don’t trust you.

        4. chris

          I don’t think younger women are disgusted by older men. I am 29 and work retail. The 15 and 16 year old girls who work in other departments are always unashamedly flirting/smitten with me. Were it not for social norms being imposed top down by older women on younger women (I suspect as a way for older women to try and keep the higher value older men as mating partners for themselves), I suspect most younger would date older men.

        5. Emily, the original


          I am 29 and work retail. The 15 and 16 year old girls who work in other departments are always unashamedly flirting/smitten with me.

          They are flirting with you because your age makes you safe. I can almost bet they have no intention of following through. If a hot guy their own age comes into the store, they are probably   so intimidated, they become mute.

          I suspect most younger [women] would date older men.

          Some, yes, but not most.

        6. GoWiththeFlow


          LOL!   Bless your heart.

          At 29 you are a young man and still in your own peak physical beauty years.   When you hit 49, check and see if sweet young teenage girls still flirt with you.

          Also girls and women can flirt with boys/men and never have any intention or desire to go any further than that with them.   Especially when women are younger, they like to practice their skills on men they consider safe.   And by safe I mean guys they won’t be going out with.

          As far as for younger women not dating older men because somehow older women “impose” some kind of limits on younger girls, not even close.   Younger women don’t consult older women on whom they should date, and likewise older women don’t order younger women around.   Like men, women do what they want to do.

          If anyone is going to enforce social norms in your situation, it will be the fathers (and possibly the police) of those 15 and 16 year old girls you think are “smitten” with you.

        7. Pat

          As a former 20 year old woman with many friends and acquaintances (who, too, were 20 year old women) –   all of us were disgusted by older men.   The only older men that weren’t vile were your Bradley Cooper-types.   But the vast majority of older men do NOT look like Bradley Cooper.   Sorry mates!

          I also question the caliber of 20 year olds you all are dating, if you aren’t rich or look like Bradley Cooper.   The only girl I know of that dated a much older man was a total social reject in our age cohort.   None of the guys our age wanted anything to do with her, because she was “weird.”   Oh well.   A young man’s trash is an old man’s treasure….

        8. Kristen

          They have to say 20 year olds, when in reality most of them would bang 14 year olds if they could.Absolutely Disgusting.They don’t want real women, they want girls that don’t know what they want, easier to manipulate.

      2. 1.1.2

        Yes you’re right there are lot’s of things about women that are fake. But to think a man is ugly and monstrous  just because he is older and yet a dried up old Cougar with cellulite and everything drooping is fantastic,  you’ve got to check your equal rights placard.  There are just as many 19 year old girls looking for older men as there are 19 year old boys wanting older women. Live with it.

        1. Realistic

          Hello   ~

          Rather than talk about numbers, let’s acknowledge that not all 20’s are blessed with great bodies and not all 50 year old woman are droopy with cellulite!   Shall I post my bikini pic?   Laughing ~ The same goes for men, some have great bodies!   As a 50 year old woman, I prefer men my age; they tend to be better lovers and deliver better post sex communication!

        2. Trudow

          LOL you are hilarious.   Equal rights placard.   I dont know how many 19 year olds go for 50 year old men and its not huge but I have heard of enough of them that it isnt a fluke.   Maybe as high as 15% if they got into an early relationship where they were hurt and realized the guy was immature.   Also depends on what you look like at 50, how fit you are, if you are set in your ways.   50 is the new 30.

        3. Jenny

          You are totally delusional.   Totally.   Grow up emotionally & take a good look at YOUR 50 yr old saggy self. Being in an real relationship is way more than about looks.   Furthermore, I live in a place with the fittest people on earth & the 40 to 50 year old women here are hot as shit.   Physical without connection doesn’t last, but you don’t seem mature enough to ever be in a real relationship anyway- regardless of the age you date.   The   20 year olds who date old men, use them & will move on.   No normal young girl wants to marry her dad.   Gross.   I don’t know ANY 19 year old girl ‘looking’ for a 50 yr old. Dream on.   LOL!!

        4. Greg

          I preferred a little older than me women when I was in my early twenties.. Saw this waitress I thought was one of the prettiest/sexiest people I’ve seen. She was around 15 years older than me, but I didn’t necessarily realize that, at the time lol. It took me a few different nights to work up the courage to ask her out, and we had a bit of a fling. It is a treasured memory. My wife happens to be my age, but she is very mature for her age.

      3. 1.1.3
        King of Losers

        I LOVE hypocrisy. It makes me feel warm inside.

        1. C

          @King Of Losers. Lolololol! Yep this thread is filled with hypocrisy and insecurity…Glad someone finally pointed it out 😂

      4. 1.1.4

        Good for you with the younger men thing. I cannot tell you how many times in my 20’s that I was flat out stalked by men anywhere from 25-65. At the time, I didn’t even realize the sheer amount of power I had because of my youth and my body type. (Natural hourglass with .7 hip to waist to breast ratio). At the time I hated my body because heroin chic was the “in look”.   And I remember having a BMI of 21 and feeling like I was too fat for my husband. The fat feeling came from the shape of my body. I didn’t have straight hips, waist, or thighs. I looked like Scarlet Johhansen. Now, my body type is ‘in’ I still have the same proportions but a BMI of 25 after 2 kids. (More like Kim K.) I cannot pass as a 20 year old in my face any longer. So, I get hit on but not stalked. I am in my early 40’s and happily married. But, each time I meet a stranger I am consistently assumed to be about 30. Because of this a lot of men in their 20’s hit on me. But generally older men my age and older don’t. And I find that really funny because the hot young men go out of their way to flirt and the old ‘has beens’ over 45 are still looking at 20 year old women. Even though I am married, I think this is the most awesome cultural shift ever. Men throughout history have attempted to tell women over 30 they are worthless because they allegedly no longer have that youthful glow. Often 40 year old men will avoid 40 year old women because they believe they have diminished value. Well, it’s their loss because the under 40 male set is after the over 40 female set. I would tell all older women to go for a much younger man. After all, we have reached our sexual peak around 40 and beyond and the only man who can keep up is one under 40. My best friend had the most terrible time dating men around 40. She is 44 and thin, blond, and gorgeous. But the men her age were looking to 25 year olds. Finally she decided to accept a date from a man turning 30. Eight months later, they are engaged. The 30 year old guy couldn’t find what he needed in women close to his age. But he found everything in her. And before you scoff, he is 6’3′, in shape, handsome, employed, and well educated. He is CRAZY about her. So all the single ladies over 40, open your mind to younger men. You might just have your mind blown in a good way. 😃😃

        1. mac

          The real reason why the younger guys go after older women, is they don’t get attention from their female counterparts. Who prefer to chase after older men. Something about being established financially and more experienced.

        2. Trudow

          Yeah but does he come with a 10 year/100,000 mile warranty?

        3. jen

          You hun, are my hero! !

      5. 1.1.5

        Absolutely pricelss reply.

        ” I got every old, ugly, monstrous old man running after [sic] you cold think of. Jeez.”

        Then immediately after, ” Now I’m old and get YOUNGER men running after me, which is a little better because they’re cute.”

        Complete double standard and blatant hypocrisy. Guess what? Back then you were cute, and that’s why the ‘monstrous’ men were attracted toward you.

      6. 1.1.6

        Sounds like Ms Hmmm, dont like older men being attracted to younger women, but now she is old,   she calls the younger guys chasing her cute, its a little better Hmmmm      Ru saying ur a woman attracted to younger men lol

      7. 1.1.7
        Steven Peterson

        Yah right, you mean you get younger men to run after your checkbook. I will agree though that it’s nice to be older, have enough   bucks to convince myself that young people are really attracted to me.

      8. 1.1.8


      9. 1.1.9

        Who does these so called studies? This is a polls of fantasy on dating sites based on men viewing too much . Get out, find mutual interests, hit golf balls or join a club, a car club, your alumni anything.

        Okcupid is a vulgar unsexy hook up site for so many fake catfish and far too many losers who just wanted to write about fake lives. I was talked into it and had 1000’s of men wanted to talk about sex instantly. Full James Bonds it’s not. It was shocking and oriented to porno sex


        I think this utterly depends on the woman. Any 20 yr old girl with a so so figure can look ready for a romp. I keep waiting for this myth to enter my life. I guess I’m blessed. Alas, it hasn’t. And I’m beyond 40

        Men love to be admired be a beautiful lady.   I think well very kept elegant, good skin, genes, keep your figure, and manintain mystery.

        When I this idealized drop dead gorgeous (brunette) 20 year old mentioned here, not bad looking 43 year old very wealthy, well dressed and successful lawyer I knew just grabbed me out of the blue, and kissed me at a party. I actually threw up a bit in my mouth. He seemed nice ancient to me, a dad, and it repulsed me. I didn’t need his $. I think this is a male fantasy. I was dating   a wonderful, kind,   handsome 6’1 21 year old.   He was a sexy and sweet guy.

        I was blonde, it made zero difference.   Elegant, mysterious,

        Unless the woman is a desperate for money.

        As I aged, I haven’t become invisible. Infact, confidence and aging well is powerful. As before, men  of all ages pay attention to me. I think it’s taking care of yourself and good genes. I see many men 20, 30,40+ beyond who let themselves go and sexy 50 somethings.

        Sorry men over 40, a beautiful 20 year old isn’t dreaming of dating you. Unless it’s the old story of you found a huntress. Most of middle aged men or elderly men are not sexy are hardly Brad Pitt. He doesn’t even look the same at 30 as 50   face it folks, we all die.

        Who wants to die alone or with someone who hates you and only stays for RARE rich guy?


        You really think young woman like the older nasty pervert Hefner? Yuck!


    2. 1.2

      Virtually no chance?

      I’m 53.

      My GF from another part of the world is 20 years old. And studying to be a doctor.

      Hot, hot, hot. We have a lot in common.

      I’ve met American women in their 30’s who were less mature in so many ways. I think to myself, why would I want to have a relationship with a 12 year old that inhabits the body of a 30 year old.

      Just because American women have been brainwashed into being no-fun prudes, does not mean the rest of the world has this affliction.

      1. 1.2.1

        Let me guess. Your gf is an Asian who needs a green card/ financial support.
        And before you jump, I’m not American.

        1. pat

          They are always the last ones to know…. 😉

        2. C.W

          P.T….   I am a 53 year old male going out with a 22 year old female.   We are very much in love and enjoy one another’s company immensely.   Here’s the thing.   We are both from a Western, English speaking nation.   We are both of European descent.   And no I am not wealthy.   However, she is a co-hair to the wealthiest family in our country.   Sorry to destroy your stereotypes.

        3. MZ

          that’s funny! And absolutely truth! I’m foreigner too!

        4. Pat


          Talking about educational level…

        5. Ame

          Im a 20. Year old female going out with a 32 year old male..we love each other and enjoys ….all i want to say is …age doesn’t matter when it comes to love …age is just a number but lobe is forever …though we had a lot of age difference ..we are both humans ….

      2. 1.2.2

        Lol, yes 20s are not attracted to old men. Cyber girlfriends who want visas arnt included. If you were so alluring you would be able to find someone in your own country

        1. Sierra

          That is untrue. I am a 22 year old female and I am in love with a 45 year old male. Conversation is good and so is the sex. We compliment each other so well.

        2. Steven Peterson

          Wow CW, your girlfriend is co heir to the wealthiest family? I think I know her. She sent me an email too. Seems she needs help getting that fortune out of the country. She’s generous too, offered to split it with me.

        3. Pat

          So true.

          If you look at statistics, male-female age gap in marriagr is more vast in undeveloped countries then developed countries.


        4. Jj

          Incorrect. I am 50.she is 19. Both white American both live and raised in good neighborhoods. Both of us look great for our ages. She attracts many. Age is just that.

        5. Emily, the original


            I am 50.she is 19. … Both of us look great for our ages.  

          Looking great at 50 means something completely different than looking great at 19.


        6. Nelly

          Lol it all balls down to individual preferences.
          I am 20 years old I have always been attracted to older men
          When I was 14 I was crushing on a 29 years old. when I was 17 I was already Inlove and dating a 51 years old (I lied to him about my age) but I was obsessed with him.we went out untill I turned 20 now I’m 21 my new boyfriend is 47 and divorced we planning to get married there’s just something sexy about those grey beard Urghhh I love it.well honestly my 51 years old ex was really hot,he had abbs and was really tall and handsome but he had grey beards and I was so obsessed with him. Note I’m African he is wealthy but it wasn’t about the money though it was just attraction.and ooo he was so experienced in bed we had good communication he was tolerant patient and understanding and supportive I still cnt get I’ve my ex it I had to end things with him.

      3. 1.2.3

        Sorry to burst your bubble but here’s the uncomfortable truth.

        Generally 40 plus men who chase 20 year old girls fall into 3 categories: 1. Losers who have few or none of the qualities women (not girls) want, 2. Companions to girls with daddy issues, 3. Perverts who are sexually attracted to teenagers but don’t want to go to jail so a 20 y.o will do.

        There are always exceptions of course. But this is was my experience as a 20 y.o. and the experience of pretty much every other woman I know. This is why we roll our eyes when we read this drivel. We’ve been there and done that and we know better.

        1. sam

          So according to you, 95% of hetero guys in the world, are losers and perverts, who are sexually attracted to teenagers but don’t want to go to jail so a 20 y.o will do.

          Daddy issues, as the reason younger women date older men is a myth made up by angry old women.

        2. jj

          The problem with you is you think 40 is old.   Pray to the almighty lord you look as good as some of those men you speak of.   Most women are worn out by 40.   I hope you age well, cause you won’t like 40 year old men when you are 40 either.   What will happen is you’ll turn 40 and realize it’s not that old and wish you were a stupid kid like you are now.


          The second problem is that women think they are God’s gift to men and if men aren’t married to one there is something wrong with them.   Actually, men are wising up and living longer.   There is no rush to divorce and losing half our crap when they can still bang girls your age and older.


          Man A–3 kids, mortgage, 2 car payments, clothes/food for family  and kids, gifts for wife, school, etc, etc, etc.   Chance of losing it all to a divorce.

          Man B-   Single.   Payed off house or close.    Money in bank.   Only worry is what beach to go to this weekend.     Only divorce is the days you dont’ go to the gym.


          This is why guys don’t get married much anymore.   Well, women too, I guess, but that is a result of men not wanting to take on a whining, outspoker, economic marriage driven, kitchen inept, lazy slob who is entitled.   NO thanks.   MGTOW and living the dream.



        3. Evan Marc Katz

          If your dream is being alone for the rest of your life, you win.

          For most people, that’s not the dream.

          Which is why 96% of people get married before they die. And 65% of men are willing to remarry again after a divorce (compared with 49% of women).

          And why married couples are twice as likely to call themselves “very happy” than single people.

          You’ve just surrounded yourself by other bitter men who chose the wrong women.

          In other words, you’re entitled to be alone. But you’re not entitled to your own facts. And suggesting that guys don’t get married much anymore or that all marriages are unhappy sounds a lot like Karl Rove swearing that Barack Obama couldn’t have beaten Mitt Romney since no one he knew voted for Barack Obama.

        4. CS

          It’s not perverted to be attracted to 18, 19 and 20-year olds.
          This study says that  men of ALL ages included in the study found the 20-year-olds to be the most attractive.
          That means it’s NORMAL.

          Pursuing them is another story, due to a variety of factors, but appearance-wise, based on the study (and my personal observation) 20 does seem to be the height of physical attractiveness.

        5. Bridget

          JJ congratulations, you just proved Lucy’s point. 🙂

        6. Jackie B

          Lucy has hit the nail exactly on the head. I know a 52 year old guy currently salivating over and chasing down a 19 year old girl (someone I work with). From what I know of this guy   he is a loser in most respects -spotty work history ,divorced, no kids, no house, etc. In other words a successful 35 – 45 year old woman (more in his age range) would kick him to the curb. He thinks flashing a gold bracelet in front of this person will get him a roll  in the sack.

          Those 3 reasons mentioned are the main ones a much older guy   and girl will hook up. Plain and simple.

        7. Wbotb

          Amen sista!! Girl power rah rah!!!

        8. Bill

          From 38 to 44 almost all the women I dated were about 25.   I had plenty of women my age who wanted to date me but most of them had emotional baggage or they were just in bad physical shape.    Also I noticed that the older women used to get really mad that I was dating younger women.

          I am now 46 and I literally just broke up with my 30 year old girlfriend who is absolutely crazy about me and wanted sex all the time.

          All three of your points are things you wish were true but have nothing to do with reality.   You’re just jealous because your sexual market value has plummeted.

          All of these articles are written to get women worked up anyway.   They are essentially marketing ploys.

          Anyone who really understands and has experience dating knows that you can’t help who you are attracted to and that attraction often transcends age.

        9. SQ

          Perhaps if we break this down into a math problem, people can remove their emotion from it and stop getting so upset.

          Men 40+  who want to date younger women > Women 18-25 who want to date  men 40+

          Women  40+  who find men 40+  attractive > Men 40+  who find  women 40+  attractive

          What you want =/= What you get

          Any questions?

        10. Buck25

          “Amen sista! Girl power! Rah! Rah!”

          @ Wbotb,

          Takes real courage to yell that here; I wonder how loudly you’ll scream that out,   when that hot guy you’re so keen to impress is around. I’ve no more patience with misandrist drivel, than you have with misogyny; neither do most men.

        11. John Nimbus

          Hi Lucy,

          You forgot the 4th category: the alpha males, successful men who have power and/or money who, even without chasing young girls, attract them naturally…;-)

      4. 1.2.4

        I’m 60 and non of my friend are prudes or brainwashed. I can only guess your opinion developed on the bases of the power of attraction. You get negativity when that’s what you put out. Don’t let me burst your bubble but when I was in my twenties, men any older than me by 5 years were noticeably old in my eyes. Dating a 50 something would be like dating my grandpa, saggy skin, grey whiskers, set in their ways, glasses, newspaper and coffee is all I saw. Why would I want to date someone who couldn’t keep up with me, and has to take laxatives. Glad you found someone but honey, we are not prudes, you just give off the wrong vibes.

        1. J.H.



          Corrupted may be a better word. What about not wanting any don’t you understand?

          I don’t wear glasses, don’t need  laxatives or other drugs, don’t read newspapers, don’t have saggy skin and can assure you, you can’t keep up with me. You wouldn’t have to worry about the abortion clinic either.

          A man with much life experience and self control can be very attractive to a younger woman. A younger woman from a different culture with the right values and spirituality.

          I wouldn’t even think about a woman that is 60 years old. Why should I? I just buy a plane ticket to a part of the world where the proper male/female dynamic still exists. It left this place along time ago.


        2. Buck25


          And   according to that study, women rate all but 20% of men “unattractive” or “below average”. Men mostly write to the top 20% of women.   That’s BOTH sides. OK what’s the difference? It’s not like you ladies occupy some special moral high ground when it comes to this, because you DO NOT.   If you’re not every bit as   appearance-driven as men, most of you are certainly close. I’m fine with that; what I’m not fine with is so many women flat out lying about it. If you feel it, then own it!

      5. 1.2.5

        C.W…So your girlfriend’s family owns Wal-Mart? You claimed your girlfriend is the next heiress to the “wealthiest family in our country.” Every American knows that only the Walton (a.k.a The Wal-Mart) family fits that description. If an heiress to the Wal-Mart Corporation is going to date anyone, the last person she would date is some man who spends his time on useless articles.

    3. 1.3

      Men are attracted to 20 year olds because they are insecure about getting old.   It is sad, because men cannot keep up with women their own age (maintaining a hard one, premature ejaculation, long refractory period).   Men are pathetic idiots.   And   the medical industry milks it for everything it is worth.   In the advertisements for Testosterone therapy (testosterone production in men decreases between the age of 35-40, a loss that accelerates with age) the ad shows this older guy, who says, “I asked my doctor and it isn’t my age.   It’s low-T.”   Oh my gods, how unmanly the need to be coddled!   Guys, grow up.   You look ridiculous chasing after women who either want you because they have a daddy complex or want you for your money.   They are not in it for the great sex.   Trust me, your wives are acutely aware of this fact too.

      1. 1.3.1


        Kinda fond of sweeping generalizations there, aren’t you? Some men your age (and even younger) do have problems keeping up with women “their own age” (or any age for that matter; a guy who has problems with ED , premature ejaculation or a prolonged refractory period, won’t do any better with a younger woman than an older one). Hell, some guys drop dead of heart attacks at that age. Some guys get stressed out from work. Some became obese. All that proves what, exactly? Newsflash for you; some men considerably older than you are still in shape, still very active, and don’t have any of the problems you describe in the bedroom, either (and no, they don’t need a “little blue pill” to do that, either. Don’t believe me, google the real statistics on the incidence of ED and related problems in men, instead of relying on anecdotal experiences of yourself and your girlfriends.

        By the by, I’m older than you, and I think I’d look pretty ridiculous chasing thirty-five or forty year old women. Apparently, you don’t think you look just as ridiculous, chasing thirty-something men. You just might want to get a second (objective) opinion on that.   Incidentally, I read your conversation in your post below; I’ve heard that same talk before…from the old, successful guys in the country club locker room, bragging about their latest torrid sexual encounter with their twenty or thirty-something girlfriends, who can do things their wives never could, and all night, too, so I’m told. Just flip the genders, and it’s really pretty much the same conversation. I think it’s pretty amusing, myself, (though I sure would like to be a fly on the wall where the younger lovers are discussing the previous evening’s events with their peers). Don’t mind me, though; your pool boy…er, “young lover”, is waiting….

        1. Jezebel

          Perhaps, Buck, you should look at my comments more as satire, than anything else–as a woman’s reaction to all the hate directed at us.   In all honesty, I feel for men having existential midlife crises.   I become unsympathetic when men my age and older demean women their own age because they are in denial of their situation.   Why is it ok for men to demean us, but when we dish it out we are chided, as if our reaction is unprovoked? I respect your critique of my comment, but please know that it is directed more at the assholes at the country club you mention than to my in general.

        2. Jezebel

          *men in general

          sorry typo

        3. Karl R

          Jezebel asked:

          “Why is it ok for men to demean us, but when we dish it out we are chided, as if our reaction is unprovoked?”

          Other than you, who is claiming that it’s okay for men to demean women?


          If I demeaned black men as being murderous junkies, people would rightfully call me a racist.   If I tried to justify my remarks by claiming I was provoked (two black men who were junkies did murder my grandparents), people would still rightfully claim that I was a racist.

          Out of the approximately 13,304,000 black men in the U.S., all but two can rightfully claim that they have never murdered my grandparents (or any other member of my family).   The vast majority have never killed anyone.   No matter how badly two black men provoked me, it’s still wrong for me to lump the other 13.3 million (or more) into the same category.


          Given that your post (#1.3) was a direct reply to Amy (#1), I don’t see how you can claim that it was a reaction to all the hate directed at you.

          If you want to respond to the sexist men who provoked you, demean those men specifically.


          Jezebel said:

          “Perhaps, Buck, you should look at my comments more as satire, than anything else—as a woman’s reaction to all the hate directed at us”

          Would you give a misogynist’s sexist comments a pass if he suggested that you should look at his comments as satire — a man’s reaction to all the hate misandrists direct at him?


          You meant it as a joke … and men made you do it.

          That sounds exactly like the weak excuses that sexist men make to defend their offenses.

      2. 1.3.2

        Men are attracted to 20 year old women because they are “insecure” about getting old?

        No, people dont seem to understand that your body ages, not your mind (with the exception of memory and reflexes). Men are attracted to young women in their 20’s because they are GORGEOUS, have skin like silk, and beautiful bodies. I assure you, it has nothing to do with worrying about getting old. Its human “Instinct”.

        Men are attracted to 20 year olds from puberty to the grave (whether to act on that instinct is another story, you wouldn’t have anything in common). They are attracted to their beauty, their bodies, and primarily their “youth”.

        That’s just basic male human instinct. Not to say that older women are not beautiful as well, many are.


      3. 1.3.3

        Prrrrrrrreach sista!!!! Rah rah girl power!!!

        1. Thomas

          Girl power?   Perhaps someone should date the Incredible hulk he’s all about the anger 🙂

      4. 1.3.4


        I’m forty six years old,   I’m a professional painter… (Owner). I painted eighteen buildings last year in nine months, by myself. I’m 6’2, 170 pounds and as far as i know, very healthy…

        Men like twenty year old women because their young and beautiful and they want to have sex with them… nothing more… I’m bored today because im old and it’s raining and i can’t work so i responded to this silly article… you sound very bitter and angry… you should try going out and getting kooch shagged… it may cheer you up… peace sister. D.

      5. 1.3.5

        Why are you so angry?   Men are pathetic idiots?   Stereotype much?   Perhaps you should step back and analyze why you feel so hateful about the opposite sex.

      6. 1.3.6

        I’m 43 and I’m told I look 25, I have a physique that most men would kill for and I look better than most men half my age.   Women my whole life have told me that I am very good looking. I get hit on by women of all ages all the time. So when your read a woman in her 20’s is attracted to a man in his 40’s its probably because he looks great and has the life experience and confidence to go with it. Its kind of crazy to presume that women are attracted to older unfit, plain looking guys and then act all grossed out about it when the fact of the matter is that some men do look amazing in their 40’s and women of all ages are attracted to those men.

        1. Evan Marc Katz

          Okay, Gordon: stand next to a 25-year-old and see if you still get confused for 25.

    4. 1.4

      No chance? Are you high? That shit happens all the time. All the time

    5. 1.5

      Sorry ladies, men of my generation just have it better than ever. We can (and most want and should) only sleep with young beautiful women for the rest of our lives, never get into a relationship or get married and not be punished/shamed for it.

      The comments regarding older men not being desired by young women make no sense. Men don’t have a need to be desired like women do. We just wanna **** the fittest women for the lowest price  possible. In the past that usually meant marriage/commitment/relationships or a lot of money/gifts or going to shady sick looking prostitutes. Nowadays you just need a little game when you’re still young and attractive or some money on your bank account when  you start getting old and tired of the chase anyway. You’d be amazed how cheap it is nowadays to make long sweet love to young beautiful escorts. I’ve personally never done it as I’m still 25 and find it quite easy to trick  young women into bed. Just tell them what they want to ear. When I get older and, by the way things are going in my life, a lot richer, I’ll just call young beauties when I’m in the mood or experiment with those bots everyone’s so hyped about. Could you imagine making long sweet love to a young Jessica Alba? What a future 🙂 I just hope to live long enough.

      Plus, with the evolution of video games and VR it’s getting even easier and cheaper to fulfill our manly needs for fighting, competition, exploration, adventure and of course sex.   You can literally be the ugliest low paid mother****** in the world and still feel like “The Man”. Do want a kid to continue your virtual legacy without the hassle of dealing with modern dangerous women that can take your kids with a swipe of her fingers? Why not wait for those artificial wombs? It’s almost a reality already in Japan 🙂

      Just find a good enough job to pay your bills, mind your diet, exercise and enjoy your porn and video games. My biggest regret in life was wasting 4 years of my life in college, get a stressful worthless job working for a dumb sad beta family man whose wife was constantly hitting on his employees,   only to realize that there are so much opportunities to make money online that I quit my job in the first year and I’m now self-employed and truly free to do whatever I need and want to do.

      1. 1.5.1

        I’m happy to hear about your career success, and it’s unfortunate how  your mom was toward your dad.

        I’d urge you to try to forgive women, to try to see them as people you can connect with – because you can. Your life will be a lot more fulfilling in the long-run if you can develop a satisfying long-term relationship.



      2. 1.5.2

        Damn dude….are you okay?

    6. 1.6
      Marie Petite

      Really,   what about the majority that are bleaching their hair?

    7. 1.7

      funny part about hat is, that only 2% of he world’s population are natural blonde, so that makes that data kind of difficult to believe.

    8. 1.8

      Right or wrong is a matter of personal choice, but it is refreshing to read logic.

  2. 2

    Evan, Can you explain your statement, ” I think we’d all be well served to pay attention to how people really act when no one’s looking instead of taking their word for it”. Do you mean do 40 year old men actually date 20 yr old women, or just exclaim that’s what they would like to do?…

    1. 2.1
      Karl R


      The data address what men find attractive, not whom we date, or whom we want to date.

      Some men in their forties have dated (or are dating) women in their twenties. I know a man in his 50s who is currently dating a woman in her 20s. (He dates women of all ages, not just those substantially younger than him.) But in general, relationships with that large of an age gap don’t occur that often, and they don’t tend to last.

      Similarly, most men in their 40s don’t want to date women in their 20s. (At least not for a long-term relationship.) We want someone who “gets” us. In general, a 22 year old just isn’t going to understand a forty-something all that well.

      Rudder’s information (rephrased) says this. If you showed me 1,000 women, and had me judge them solely on their physical attractiveness, then sorted the women into groups by age, the group with the best (average) score would be somewhere in their 20s.

      On an individual basis, some of the women in their 40s will be more attractive than some of the women in their 20s. The best-looking women in their 40s will be more attractive than *most* of the women in their 20s. But when looking at large averages, the women in their early 20s will be the most attractive group.

      There is a correlation between youth and beauty, but it’s not a particularly strong correlation. There is also a correlation between attractiveness and the amount of attention you’ll get from potential dates. The correlation is stronger, but it’s still not absolute.

      But the way Rudder presented his data was misleading. He displayed his data in a way that hid how weak the correlation was.

      Getting back to my earlier example of the man in his 50s dating a woman in her 20s. His girlfriend is a reasonably attractive woman, but she’s no more attractive than my wife (who is 60).

      Everyone dates people that they find (sufficiently) attractive. Only idiots prioritize attractiveness over everything else. I married an older woman because my relationship with her was the best relationship I ever had. Her attractiveness (while a nice bonus) was less important. Her age was less important than that.

      Don’t read too much into the study. It doesn’t actually say that much.

      1. 2.1.1

        Karl, yours are the best comments here

      2. 2.1.2

        Thanks Karl, that makes so much sense. Also I think women integrate more than compartmentalise so may have made other assumptions about the males they saw which broadened their age choice than if they could just choose based on the physical alone – which I wonder if it would be closer to the males choice if we are talking just visceral response.

      3. 2.1.3

        The media generally portrays men as really looks-fixated (look at the way they advertise to men – bikini models to sell burgers, deodorant, internet domains, etc).   What percentage of men actually take personality and compatibility into account, and what percentage of men are distracted by the pleasant window-dressing and the ego boost of a big age gap?   I don’t know if there’s any way to estimate, but I get the feeling (from experience) that more men are enthralled by looks alone, and that you’re just a very special guy in a small minority of men. 🙂  

        1. Rob Freeman

          You would be right Pat. The truth (as much as it hurts) is that if a 20year old woman was sat next to a Man on a bus and their legs touched, he would have a huge erection and be willing to risk his wife, home and kids for some of that flesh. He would be thinking only of the total ecstasy which awaits.

      4. 2.1.4


        I have so much respect for you. Thank you for posting this beautiful comment.

        I’m a 26 year old woman who hates to hear men say filthy, cruel things about older women. Older women have so much to offer to everyone, far beyond sex. This world might even be a lot healthier if we would stop discounting them.

        I have known so many beautiful, interesting, and intellectual women in their fifties and sixties who I really admire and aspire to emulate.

        1. judy

          Thank you to Karl and Eva.   Young women DO actually get old one day, unless they die before (sorry to be so blunt).

          There is no reason on earth why an older woman should not be attractive to a man in a reasonable age group close to her own -as long as she has what he is looking for and vice versa.

          I have personally witnessed a truly beautiful woman (at least physically) being ignored by men of her own age group because of her rather unpleasant personality and an unhealthy obsession with her looks.

          Certainly grooming is important but having a fun evening with someone is even better and it works for both sexes.

      5. 2.1.5

        Hey, You sound like a sweetheart with a sensible head on his shoulders. I’m so glad you and your wife are happy..

        I think dating a 20 sometthing while in your 50s is odd. I certainly did not want to hang out much less date someone older than 28 when I was in my 20s. I love looking at young, strong men today. But what’s going thru my head is not that I want to date them. I like to look… What girl doesn’t. But the thing that gets me riled up is when these guys who get a date with these young girls think that they are something special and think they are young again. Good for them… Let them have their day or two but ide like to know what’s really going on in that young girls head. When he’s 80 she will be 50 and ready to rock roll. Does he really think she’s going to want someone who slows her down or that she has to push around in a wheel chair? I just wanted to can’t stand old men who think they are actually young and can get young chick’s when they really look like the girls dad or even grandpa and are just putting up with the young 20 year Olds spirit of youth to make themselves feel better. I wonder how many relationships with that much age difference really last.

        1. Al

          I personally found that women aged 19-24 were the most attracted to me after I hit my 30’s, so I wouldn’t say your feelings are necessarily the norm (I am also not saying my own experience is necessarily the norm).   My experience is simply anecdotal, but it was an extreme enough difference that it isn’t likely to have been simple coincidence.   I should add that I have generally not pursued women in this age range (aside from a single exception).   In general, I find myself becoming friends with these women and they eventually pursue me.

          Based upon what I’ve heard from women I have had in my life, there is an attraction to older men because they are generally less clingy, have more life experience and are more confident in bed (I didn’t say better, but confidence and the ability to communicate about sex is very important).    This isn’t simply physical attraction, which is what this article’s statistics refer to.

          I do understand that the difference in age I am speaking of is not as extreme as a 50 year old dating a woman in her 20’s, but age isn’t necessarily indicative of maturity (for men or women). I have met 21 year old women with intelligence and maturity well beyond that of many women in their 40’s.

          In the end, it’s important to keep in mind that this article deals with physical attraction only, and there are endless facets to attraction.

        2. Bob

          Sometimes, a man waits too long to get married, and they find themselves alone, over 40, and yet still wanting a family.     That’s just a little of where I stand…just a hair over 40…not entirely stable job prospects, even after having busted my ass the whole time since my 20’s.     Maybe I just wasn’t working harder than everybody else.     Or maybe I was just too dumb enough to recognize when to throw in the towel and do something else for a career.

          If I wish to get married, it’s only b/c I don’t want to live out the rest of my life alone, but more importantly, it’s a dying parent’s wish that I get married and raise a child.     No pressure there, right?

          Anyhow, I digress…

          To seek out a 40+ woman, is an ok-but-not-great idea, dictated by the statistics that a women over 40 have problems conceiving as well as greater probabilities that the child will be born with genetic defects.         As a man, you’re kind of asking to looking for a problem where none shouldn’t exist in the first place.       Or, as my parents would more eloquently quote from an old proverb, “taking a snake, and trying to shove it up one’s ass.”

          Personally, I know it would probably be a hardship, but want to believe that I would do my best to take care of my kid, no matter what state that they were born in.


      6. 2.1.6

        Thank you Karl, that makes me feel better about things not just being about age

        1. Marie Petite

          Bob…beyond 45 a woman might have problems if no longer menstruating. Despite all we read, they still don’t tell us about the women in their late 40’s and early 50’s that find themselves pregnant and having abortions.

      7. 2.1.7

        Your wife at 60 is as physically or as sexually attractive as a 20 year old woman?

        Maybe you should qualify this comment.

        I’m happy you found a life partner, Karl. But let’s not confuse the issue here. A 60 year old woman will never be as physically or sexually attractive to a man as a 20 year old woman, all other things being equal. It’s biologically impossible.

        1. Trix

          Insulting somebody’s wife is pretty low

        2. Boy

          Insulting another men’s wife does NOT make you better than anyone else. Get some class!

        3. J.H.

          Boy, it doesn’t make much sense to me  for you or anyone else  to be insulted by someone  that doesn’t know them.

          Maybe I’m a genius.

          And maybe that’s why women in their biological and sexual prime are attracted to me, and not you.

        4. Wbotb

          Well a 60 year old man or even a 50 year old man that is, will NEVER be a attractive to a 20 or   even 30 year old woman unless he has special genetics or has had something cosmetic done to keep himself sexually appealing.

        5. Pat

          “And maybe that’s why women in their biological and sexual prime are attracted to me, and not you.”


          Your comment made me laugh out loud!   I’m a woman in my biological and sexual prime and I’m definitely not attracted to you.    I’d take Boy over you – he knows what’s what.

        6. Marie Petite

          Look at Christie Brinkley; there are a few and they don’t need to be in the media.

        7. Ryan

          You’re 53?? You act like a a dude in his early 20’s… wonder you chase after 20 year old girls….you act like one yourself!

        8. N.N.

          check out Christy Brinkley J.H.

      8. 2.1.8

        This comment is spot on

      9. 2.1.9

        Yes, and you know what?   Women are superficial too.   I am with a much older man, but I have affairs with beautiful men 20 years younger than me.   I am attractive, I am fitter than most 20 somethings at the gym.   I am smart, funny, and I have heard no complaints from the younger men I am with.   The only complaints are from the older men, the men my age (I am 53) who need to blame someone for the fact that they come too soon and can’t get it up again for at least 6 hours   And you know what, we older women prefer the looks and the attitudes and the staying power of younger men.   I urge every older woman out there to give one a try.   My daughter is very upset with a male friend of hers because  he hit on me at a New Year’s gathering.   He was 20.   I was repulsed by him, even though he was physically beautiful, BECAUSE I AM NOT A PEDOPHILE!

      10. 2.1.10

        well said!    I am a 32 year old woman and even though I am married I, once in a while, fall a little bit in love with other men (because I am human).   The men I fall for are usually roughly my age (+/- 5 years) and have nothing else in common.   Some of them are smart, some of them make me laugh, some have money, some are poor…some are very very plain.   I have never done anything about this offcourse and these crushes always fade away.   I have always found it facinating though, because none of these men have been “hot” or good looking and if I had seen them as a datingsite profile I would never have thought twice about them.   I have never figured out what made me attracted to those men, but it just happens…its some kind of an invisible chemistry.    The last one was actually almost 10 years older than me, a little overweight and was going bald…he was very plain looking and nothing about him “stood out” …very plain personality and not rich or anything like that.   I was suddenly very attracted to this man….kind of strange.    If someone would show me pictures of a 100 men, all ages, I would probably also find the younger ones more attractive on avarege…and the men looking like my latest crush…well I probably wouldnt even notice them.    But in real life, I never fall for these young, beautiful men….even though I can see that they are fit and beautiful.   But then I suddenly want to jump on some 40 year old average joe.    Beauty is only a small part of the overall attraction.

      11. 2.1.11

        Golf Clap!!!!

  3. 3

    Is this really that surprising? A 40 year old man may be most attracted to the 20 year old but understands that for one reason or anther pursing a relationship with said 20 year old is unlikely to succeed. That understanding though, doesn’t cause any less of stir in the loins when he looks at her….

  4. 4

    I’m shocked–shocked!–to find that gambling is going on in here!

  5. 5

    Not surprised and as a guy I often wonder if women are being honest. We’re just talking pure physical attraction here. Of course, to a man, a younger woman is more attractive. And we also know younger men are, physically, more attractive than older men.

    I’ve heard women often think emotionally and wonder if something along those lines aren’t happening here.

    This reminds me of another study done that I believe I read here. Where men judged women online profiles on a bell curve(as it should be). While women rated something like 80% of men as unattractive.

    1. 5.1

      Morris, I think study that was another OKCupid analysis.

    2. 5.2
      Sparkling Emerald

      Yes Morris, men love to reference that part of the study,while conveniently ignoring the part of the study that shows that while men might rate more “fairly” they mostly write to the 9s and 10s.

      1. 5.2.1

        Not sure what that has to do with topic of rating physical attractiveness. But I did go back and read the article.(Joe, you are right. It was an okcupid analysis.) And it stated that the top 1/3 of women got 2/3 of messages. That doesn’t seem all that out of line.

        Since men are doing the majority of first time messages why wouldn’t they set their sights high and work down(physical attractiveness wise)? If physical attraction is high on mens list that seems logical to me.

        So I guess I don’t really see your point. Are you saying women don’t contact men based on a priority women have? Or are you saying men are bad for having different priorities?

        1. SparklingEmerald

          Well Morris, if you don’t understand my point about clarify the study you cited IN IT’S ENTIRETY, I guess I don’t understand why you even brought the study up, if you were only interested in half of it.

        2. Morris

          SparklingEmerald – I guess we just see things differently. It seemed like you didn’t like what I wrote so you brought up a different point on an article I referenced(from memory) for whatever reason.

          I agree that I only pointed out one thing about an article that covered more(even more than what you added btw). But the point and topic was about rating attractiveness. Which I thought I stuck to.

      1. 5.3.1

        No but I scanned the article. Not sure I agree with everything but in general it makes sense. Men prioritize physical beauty and that obviously declines with age. Although I think that just means men are less likely to date older women or women their own age as they get older(and if given the option to date younger).

        Personally I wouldn’t date a woman in her 20s(I’m in my early 40s now.). My own experience is both men and women find their own in their 30s. I can’t count the number of attractive people in their 20s that have completely lost it in their 30s. But the ones that I know that have been attractive in their 30s go on being attractive well into their 40, 50 on. Again, this is just my experience.

        Back to that article. Women prioritize attributes that happen to increase with age. And it seems tied to stability and ability to provide. I’d think if women just took that off the table by becoming successful themselves. It would open up a much larger dating pool.

        1. Janie

          OK. Fair enough. But from a purely biological perspective, men’s fertility doesn’t decline with age, at least not much. So they’ll always have that towards keeping a high sexual market value longer.
          But, I think we agree that there are more important things in life than sexual market value.

        2. Al

          Morris, you make a really good point. I’ve said this before because I’ve seen it play out so many times. It’s easy to look good at 20. Pretty much everyone, not just the true beauties, look decent at 20. The ravages of living haven’t really caught up to people yet. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve noticed people (both men and women) who were HOT in high school but turned out to look frumpy and old at 40.  
          A friend of mine, against everyone’s advice, married a cheater and a player. He left his 33 year old wife for my friend (then about 23). Naturally, she grew older. It happens to everyone. However, in his mind, he was still chasing that sweet young thing. Of course, he left her for another 20-something year old after about 7 seven years together.   Now HE’S getting older, is losing his mojo and deeply regrets leaving her, because she looks FANTASTIC at 40, WAY better looking than he can ever achieve again with his old man’s butt. 🙂
          My stupid brother does the same thing. He likes them young, thin and cute. Somehow he’s always baffled they don’t freeze in time that way. I guess my point is that youth doesn’t necessarily equal beauty. The bloom can’t stay on that rose forever.   So, my advice is to find an attractive woman in her 40s (like ME) because, with us, you know what you’re going to get. If a woman is beautiful at 40, she’s likely to remain lovely at 50 and 60 and so on. Her lifestyle and genetics have already set the course.

        3. Hmmm

          This is really a reply to “AL”.
          Al, here’s the thing. You, your old male friends, ect, are far too hung up on looks and how women look. All of you sound lost and superficial. And the men you claim are the most hung up on these young girls’ looks have no looks to speak of themselves. I know this because 99% of older men have no looks to speak, but they’ve got plenty opinions to share, and people get tired of them easily.

    3. 5.4

      Morris, to most women security and protection are more important than physical attractiveness. It doesn’t matter so much what a man looks like if he is not fit as a provider or he isn’t going to be around for the long-term. If you are a woman looking for a LTR you have to pick the best long-term prospect, not the most attractive. I don’t actually find younger men attractive. They don’t give me the feeling of stability or dependability which is what I seek in a mate. A man wearing an obviously expensive, discreet, well-made suit who blends in a midtown NYC crowd is 1000 times more attractive to me than a cute lifeguard with a six pack, or a musician in tight jeans.

      Ditto men who are peacocky and aware that they are “good looking”. When men are “attractive” in that way, you know they want to be attractive to ALL women, as many as they can manage. Huge turn-off. High risk (cheaters, high spenders) prospects get an immediate pass.

      There is an extremely high cost of sex to women – pregnancy, STDs, emotional attachment, we have to be very deliberate when we pick ppl we sleep with. So we have to weigh these issues when selecting a potential mate.

      1. 5.4.1

        If that is what you’re looking for in a partner it makes sense to filter potential prospects in that way. Men and women have different priorities that’s all.

      2. 5.4.2

        I hope you don’t mind me responding, but I really wish you would just speak for yourself. You don’t know and therefore cannot speak to what “most women” find attractive or want in a mater. This thing with STD’s and pregnancy as the “high cost of sex” for women sounded like an archaic and odd statement to me personally. What year is it, 1940? Also, men get STD’s too but you made it sound like only women can get those. I wonder how old these commenters are because a lot of these comments sound like they could’ve been written in the 1950’s.

        1. Chloe

          @Ben, no, listen…Younger men are more attractive than older men. IMO, men haven’t been taking care of themselves physically until recently with the rise of the Metrosexual Male”. Most older men don’t have hair and if they do, it’s gray and sticks up all over the place like a gray bird’s nest (Think Sean Penn), they have gotten fat, ect. So no, there is no way older men are more attractive then younger men. No way on earth. Those traits you mentioned like confidence are alright. Confidence doesn’t make a man better looking to me because even crazies and abusers walk around and approach women with confidence. Looks and money are 2 different things. If an older man is a 3 and thinks he’s a 10 because he’s a little successful, it’s a turn off. A complete turn off. Success doesn’t make a 3 turn into a 10; a 3 is then just a 3 with money.

      3. 5.4.3

        Hmm how is dating someone for their money any less superficial than dating someone for their looks. Hmmm

    4. 5.5

      “And we also know younger men are, physically, more attractive than older men.”

      In pure physical terms, yes. There’s the matter of association too though. If a woman finds herself attracted to certain abstract qualities (confidence, success, whatever) and has learned to associate that with older men, I find it entirely plausible that she might subjectively find a photograph of an older man more attractive even though she has no way of knowing that he actually has those abstract traits.

      I have no idea if there are numbers to back that up (or even how one would go about setting up an experiment to prove it one way or the other; I’m not a scientician), but it makes sense to me.

      1. 5.5.1

        What’s the old saying;

        Men are like wine, women are like milk.

        Men who are fit and take care of themselves, tend to become more attractive to women as they get older.

        The reverse is not true.

        Physically speaking, women in their sexual prime have always been the most attractive to men. These ages are from 17-24.

        The same ages in regards to ones sexual prime are true of men as well. But most women, even of these age groups are not attracted to what today is more of a boy than a man. Frequently unable to bring very much to the table other than his youth and lack of experience.

        1. pat

          “What’s the old saying: Men are like wine, women are like milk.”

          Yeah… that’s not an actual saying. lol. Men may always be attracted to 20-somethings, regardless of their age. However, women are consistently attracted to their peers (not old dudes)!

          Evan has written about this before. A 48 year old man may lust for a 26 year old, but the 26 year old wants a man within a few years of her own age (just as a 50 year old woman wants a man within a few years of her own age). Men are wired one way, women are wired another. In my 20’s, I never considered dating a man over 30, until I was actually 28. So all that talk about men’s sexual prime being an ever-lasting asset is horse shit. Sorry to burst your bubble, bro. The only way you’re going to land a woman that much younger than you is if she’s either: 1) a gold digger 2) has daddy issues, 3) a destitute foreigner. But you already know that, don’t you. 😉

        2. Wbotb

          Most men I know in their 30s and 40s don’t even look at women those ages. They like 30 and up. Most men I know see them as children.

      2. 5.5.2

        I have to agree with Chloe – younger men are always objectively better looking than older men.   No matter what a man looks like at 50, he will have looked 100% better at age 30 – guaranteed.   I’m not sure why men think they are so incredibly different than women – you do not get better looking as you age.   Even Sean Connery and George Clooney did not improve in appearance as they aged – they were way more attractive when they were younger (and most men don’t look like Sean Connery or George Clooney at any age, to begin with!).

        Also, “abstract qualities” be damned.   We don’t associate confidence and success with older men – we associate confidence and success with confident men and successful men.   Lol. These qualities don’t get deferred to older men unless the older men actually possess these qualities, but younger men are just as likely to possess these qualities, too.   The idea that women somehow prefer much older men is horse shit from MRA sites.   Most young women would take a dreamy, young 30 year old doctor over a 50 year old George Clooney.   We want men who are young, strong, and fit enough to protect us and our kids, and cool enough to still be able to relate to our kids (not some geezer).   The vast majority of women in the US marry their peers (husband within 4-5 years of her age) – it’s statistically backed.

        1. Laura Cuell

          Amen. I’m a woman and I support this comment.

        2. Wbotb

          Yes! State those facts. Let’s stop society from being brainwashed into believing that young women desire a man 20 years older.

    5. 5.6

      Haven’t read the rest of the replies but yes, I do believe that thinking emotionally does have something to do with it. Not sure if this is true for all women but I suspect that it is for the majority. I have had discussions somewhere along the lines of this one with my husband many times. I have great difficulty in separating physical attractiveness from (potential) personality. I say potential because when looking at photos of strangers, I can only guess at their personalities. However, when shown photos of two attractive men where one is clearly more attractive than the other based on raw features alone, I have been known to say I like the the less good looking of the two because he “looks nicer” or because the other one “looks like a jerk”. I realize that this makes no sense at all and I can definitely appreciate beauty for what it is (which one is truly better looking vs. which one I could be attracted to). Nevertheless, it takes more effort for me to only consider features and bodies and to ignore other cues, even in photos of strangers where the backgrounds and poses can be misleading, saying nothing about the personality.

      Like you, my husband is always amazed and wonders whether I am telling the truth and how there could possibly be any doubt about which one is more attractive. Over time, I have learned to tune out the other bits and fairly evaluate which one is truly better looking though that does not translate directly into attractiveness for me. Hope that made sense 😛

  6. 6

    Men are attracted to young fertile women — this a rather obvious biological fact. Therefore, I find it rather amusing that women around 40 or so believe they can catch a “hot man” (a term repeatedly used at EMK) for marriage. A hot man would never be interested in a non-fertile woman! Never!

    Similarly, a hot woman would never date a short man!

    1. 6.1
      Karmic Equation

      A hot man in his 40’s can’t compare to a hot guy in her age group. Just wishful thinking on the 40yo’s part.

      What tilts 20yos in his favor would be his stupidly spending money to keep her happy and buying her stuff. And if he can afford it and is ok with being a sugar daddy, they both get what they want. Good for them.

      But that girl is going to cheat on him or dump him eventually. But then he can go on to spend his money on the next young thing.

      And it’s all ok if both parties are just satisfying one’s lust the other’s avarice.

      But if either are looking for love, it really can’t work. Only in movies.

      1. 6.1.1

        A really hot 40-year-old man certainly can get women who are 25-30. The average 40-year-old man, on the other hand, cannot. Older men, say 50, are never hot! A 50-year-old man is not very sexually attractive to women. Relationships between middle-aged men and women should not and cannot be based on sex! It makes me sad to hear that middle-aged couples divorce because their sex life is not very active or exciting. Who really thinks we can retain a high degree of arousal for a spouse who is more than 50 years old after decades of marriage? Why are modern people so stupidly unrealistic?

        1. Karmic Equation

          Theo. Most men in their 40s are not “really” hot. A really hot woman in her 70s (Rachel Welch); in her 60s (Susan Sarandon); in her 50’s (Christie Brinkley); in her 40s (Cindy Crawford) — can get whatever man they want.

          Please. Let’s talk reality. MOST men in online dating do not rate as hot, never mind, really hot.

          Read “Mating in Captivity” by Esther Perel. Maybe then you’ll understand more about why couples who’ve been together for a long time lose their sexual interest in each other. There’s a reason for it and there’s a fix.

        2. Karmic Equation

          Joe, I agree with you. I was just refuting Theo’s point about “hot” or “really hot” men in their 40s. They don’t exist.

          I suspect Theo may be equating “hot” or “really hot” with “fit” and “jacked” men. Have to burst his bubble. Even if the guy has abs of steel. If he has a ZZ Top face. He ain’t hot. (I’ve actually seen this in online profile images. Guy has close up of his abs. Nice. Pans out. Face only a mother could love. And maybe not even then). Next.

        3. Joe

          Puhleez. There are hot women and men in their 40s. Really hot, even. Not as many as in their 30s–and fewer still than in their 20s–but some.

        4. Sass

          So just keep trading up for the younger model? That’s your answer? And I guess women over 40 should just shrivel up and die?

          This right here is why women get annoyed. Not because 40 + men are attracted to younger women. That’s perfectly natural. What’s annoying is when bitter 40+ men feel they have to use this fact to constantly stick it to 40+ women and constantly make us feel unworthy, hopeless and invisible.

        5. Sass

          @Karmic Equation. I’ll be looking for that book.

        6. pat

          From a relatively young woman’s perspective, Karmic Equation is right – men in their 40s are rarely (VERY rarely) “hot”.   The peak in attractiveness varies between men, but it generally falls somewhere between 25-33 (but mostly the late 20s).   After that, it’s all about how much money you earn (if you want to bag a gorgeous 20 yr old).   For the rest of us, personality, compatibility, and love are equally weighted with finances and looks.

        7. Jo

          No for a you g woman like me over 40 and hot man dont go in same sentence

        8. Babette

          Not 20, but 25 and I have never been more attracted to anyone than a 45 y.o. man. Exceptionally good looking and looked younger than his age. Can’t say I routinely am attracted to older men, but he probably would not have been attracted to me were it not for my youth.

    2. 6.2

      “Similarly, a hot woman would never date a short man!”

      When I met and fell in love with my childhood sweetheart in my teens, I was considered among the hottest prettiest and smartest girls in my school and neighbourhood. And I fell madly in love with a short guy, only 2 inches taller than myself. Stayed in love with him for half my life…So I hope that gives some hope to the ‘non-fertile’ women or short men who read your comment. :p

      It’s foolish to speak in absolutes when it comes to love and human attraction, or indeed when it comes to anything apart from the hard sciences (which is a tiny part of the universe). I feel kinda bad for u that u think humans are so unevolved.

      1. 6.2.1

        When people say women don’t want short guys, they mean shortER, i.e. shorter than they are. If your guy was 2″ TALLER than you, that doesn’t count and you don’t get to claim sainthood for it.

        1. twinkle

          “When people say women don’t want short guys, they mean shortER”. Except that’s not true in many cases, though maybe that’s how You use the word ‘short’. If u don’t believe me, u can read Evan’s article on the short/Asian men. 🙂 At about 5 feet 6, he was in the category of short guys.

          Nobody’s claiming sainthood, lol. Hey I didn’t choose the short guy over the taller guys out of charity to short men, just like I don’t expect Hugh Jackman chose his significantly-older wife (according to Karl R’s example) out of charity either. People sometimes value and choose partners who may have a conventionally-less-desirable quality because we see that the person is simply wonderful overall. I suspect that people who can’t grasp why a person with options would do that are those who depend on others’ opinions for validation. So for eg, some pple think if they date a short guy or a middle-aged woman that their friends will think they couldn’t get someone ‘better’. For me, I don’t give a damn, haha.

        2. twinkle

          Oops, in case my wording wasn’t clear, when I said “At about 5 feet 6, he was in the category of short guys”, that refers to my childhood sweetheart, not Evan (much taller) or the guy in Evan’s article (even shorter).

        3. pat

          Sorry, Joe, but you’re wrong. Men often like to think that as long as they are taller than the woman (by an inch of two) that they are “taller” and that’s enough.

          That’s not how most women see it. When most women say they want a taller guy – they don’t mean an inch or two taller than her. They want a guy who’s 6 feet or more. It doesn’t matter whether she’s 4 feet tall, that’s what she’s attracted to. I’ve met many women who make a big deal about wanting guys who are specifically over 6 ft when they themselves are barely 5 ft.

          So just because a guy is taller than the woman, doesn’t mean he’s not short to her. I personally don’t care and I don’t understand the obsession with height, beyond the biological imperative for protection.

        4. Tina

          Joe, You are soo funny 😃 hehehee

      2. 6.2.2

        Thank you Twinkle.   This is the best response I’ve read so far.   When it comes to love and attraction there really isn’t a “box” we can place our feelings in and call it day.   Life isn’t this simple.   I just turned 50 and have let some very good relationships go because of what my social up bringing told me was the right thing to do.   I’ve learned not to let your age define what path love/life takes you or it will doom you forever.

    3. 6.3

      I’m in my early 30s and happily paired off and no longer looking, but I’ll tell you one thing – in my entire 20s, I never found men in their 40s to be attractive. Hell, I didn’t find men in their 30s to be attractive only until I started approaching 30 myself.

      This is consistent with the many women I’ve known in my lifetime and it’s also consistent with statistics (Evan even wrote about this phenomenon). Women are attracted to men in their peer group and as women age they find men their own age attractive. Most young women are not attracted to creepy, old dudes. Sorry.

      I know old dudes (40+) like to delude themselves into thinking that they are valued by 20-somethings, but they aren’t. Even as a 30 year old, I’d rather date a good looking 32, 34, or 36 year old than a 40 year old. When I was 25, my range was even more limited – I was willing to date guys up to 29. Guys over 30 weren’t even on my radar, let alone 40 year olds! Ick!!!

      1. 6.3.1

        Pat, your comments to this blog seem to have a lot of heat behind them. Whatever your reasons are,I have to say that whole thing about “when I was in my 20s I never would’ve dated anybody 30+” was pretty close minded if you ask me. When you were in your early 20s (20-24) I can understan completely. But what you said about being 25 you wouldn’t date anybody past 29 is just ridiculous. So if you started dating a 29 year guy 3 months before his 30th birthday, what would you have done when he turned 30? Dump him? Everybody has a right to have their peronal age range to date somebody, to each there own. But you’re talking like men who turn 30 became decrepit, grey,wrinkled up geezers and thats bullshit. There’s very little difference between your late 20s and early 30s. It’s not like when you turn 30 everything changes in one day. The girls I’ve know 26ish onward would date men who were 30, some even older. This “all the women I’ve known in my lifetime” is utter shit. Either you “known” very few women or you’re talking about your close friends that are likely small minded and shallow as you as girls like that tend to hang in small packs. This is all based on YOUR opinion. Your not speaking for the majority. There’s no magical line between 29 and 30, only thing changes at this point in life is the numbers. Your just leaving one numerical decade of your life and going into another. The 20s are not some exclusive club you join for ten years and everything else is forbidding. Once your past 26 your in the shadow of your 30s. Again nothing wrong with having a preferred age range, but don’t act like anything   a FEW years above is horrendous, especially because ones number isn’t a 2 but a 3 and when you’re at the later years of that current decade of your life.

        1. Fran

          Ryan, the same can be said for both sexes and different age ranges.

          There should not be any magical line between 35 and 36, and still *in my experience online* the majority of men in their 30s and 40s do not want to be contacted by women older than 35 (or often 34). I’m 36, just got back online with the same profile I had when I was 34-35 and I hardly receive any message, while I used to receive several new messages a day.

          As you said, everybody is entitled to their own age preferences. As Evan said, you can’t force someone to change their mind so just focus on those who are open to knowing you.

        2. pat

          You can call my experiences “utter shit” all you want, doesn’t change the fact that all the women I’ve ever known have dated and married guys within a few years of themselves.   Most people do not date or marry with huge age gaps, anecdotally or statistically!   That is a fact – check with US marriage statistics.   The majority of couples are within 4 years of each other.   I don’t know why older men delude themselves into thinking huge age gaps are common or normal, must watch too many Hollywood movies.

        3. Ryan

          First off I’m not talking about huge age gaps of 10-15 years, I’m talking about the whole “I wouldn’t date a guy over 30 when I’m in my late 20s” comment. The way you were putting it men in their 30s are some disgusting , hideous, sub-humans that should be killed. I just turned 30 and dating a girl who is 26, we started dating three years ago when I was 27 and she was 23. Now that im 30 what is she supposed to do drop me because I’m no longer in my 20s? I can understand your basing all this on your own “experience” or whatever and the few women you ever known. But I know a lot of women, some of whom are in my family that are in pretty large age gape relationships and a few even married. Speaking of marriage and your clinging to the whole “statistic” thing, similar aged marriages are statistically high but marriage these days is not the same as it used to be and more people these days are in LTR’S or in a civil partnership. Do a survey on these people and the numbers will be different. And don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying older guys are not creeps and delusional when it comes to young women because a lot of them are, but a lot of us in our early 30s dating women in their mid- late 20s is hardly unnatural or disgusting or creepy.

    4. 6.4

      Women in their 40s are still fertile silly. Stop believing all those myths and read some real science. I know plenty of women who had babies in their 40s. A woman is fertile till menopause so don’t ever take not using protection for granted. Btw, did you know that a man’s sperm loses quality as he ages? Yes, it starts to mutate more and more as they age and can lead to having autistic babies. Sorry, not sorry to rain on your parade bye.

      1. 6.4.1

        That is only due to the advancements in medicine.   In the past it was untrue.

        1. Lola

          Actually, it generally has a lot to do with the age a woman is when she has her first child. If she has one at 23, she is fertile into her 40s like my grandmother who had a surprise 8th kid at 42, long before there were any advancements in medicine.

          Facts are that there is definitely a sharp decline in natural pregnancies when women hit 40, but it’s only a 4% statistical difference between women 30-34 and women 35 to 40.

    5. 6.5

      Theo thats not true.

      when I was 17 I was very good looking and was considered “hot”.    I met a boy, he was 2 years older than me, very short and kind of strange looking.   He asked me out and I said “NO thanks, not gonna happen”.   He was very confident and would not give up…he showed up everywhere I was and I got to know him.   He made me laugh and suddenly I became very attracted to him.   We started dating and became a couple.   I have never been in love like that again, and never been as attracted to anyone as I was to him.   He was very short (shorter than me and I am petite), strange looking and not sucessful at all….but he made me laugh and he was confident and I loved that.    He dumped me btw…that ugly little shit;)

  7. 7
    Maybe You're Right

    The problem comes when the man mistakes that physical attraction to a woman much younger for love. It hurts older women who deserve love, too. In my opinion, some men have the tendency to gravitate to someone their maturity level versus their age. I’d like to find out if that’s true.

    1. 7.1

      Your extremely right about men gravitating towards women that are their maturity level or people that are their maturity level . My boyfriend is 51 and he likes hanging out with 20 something year old people and smoking weed with them and he likes talking to 20 something year old girlS so yeah that is so true because he acts like he’s 20 something years old and he’s 51.and my boyfriend looks much older than 51 he looks like he’s between 55 and 60 because of a rough life he has lived .but he has a very outgoing gregarious personality so maybe that’s why younger people are attracted to him because he seems to be the life of the party at 51 and likes to party and smoke weed so he’s a fun outgoing immature person.and he also lives with mom and dad in the basement at 51 .

  8. 8

    A hard thing to accept for every middle-aged person, man or woman, is the loss of physical attractivity to members of the opposite sex. This may sound depressive or cynical; still, I believe it is true. Mother Nature is cruel to human beings older than 40, 50, or 60 years 🙁

    1. 8.1
      Karmic Equation

      I disagree. I think as long as both groups look to date within their own age groups, it can work. But men in their 60’s want to date women in her 40s. That’s just nuts.

      1. 8.1.1

        SOME men in their 60s want to date women in their 40s. Thankfully, there are also some men who would happily date women of their own ag; let’s not forget to give them credit.

    2. 8.2

      With lots of vegetables, a clean diet, and things like yoga a middle aged person can remain sexually attractive from then and beyond.

      1. 8.2.1

        Not at 90 though.     that would be rare.   haha.

    3. 8.3

      Another hard thing for us all to accept is the waning of our OWN attractiveness. I look in the mirror and still see the 28 year-old who men would frequently chat up; but in reality, my waist has thickened, my boobs aren’t as perky, my smile is still warm but includes more than a few “crows’ feet.”

      I’m fortunate that I am happy with my age and find many men who are my peers ~ and even a bit older ~ attractive. I genuinely feel bad for the men and women who feel no connection with potential mates in their own age group and cannot understand that no, they do not actually look as young as they feel. I don’t know how to respond to friends who tell me that they are only attracted to people 10+ years younger than they are; maybe they’ll find love and a long-lasting healthy relationship with someone much younger but it’s not likely.

    4. 8.4

      I’m a 20 years old woman, attractive (I believe) yet it really hurts me to read this article. It’s extremely depressing no matter how old you are. How long can we be 20 years old? Statistics like this makes me wish i was a lesbian so I could fall in love with somebody who’d love me back instead of treating me like a disposable sex doll / trash (apparently that’s what women are to men)

      1. 8.4.1

        It is a hard realization that this is how the sexes operate and that women are valued mostly on how they look, for the fleeting of their youth.   As a 20 yr old, you’ll see older men panting over you, while ignoring women their own age (even their very own girlfriends and wives!). It’s a very sad spectacle and in no time, you’ll be too old for them to pay attention to anymore.   I remember feeling the same way you do, vividly.

      2. 8.4.2

        I am a 21 year old woman but I feel like men only used to look at me when I was 13-20 Haha. I must be out of my prime already. Lol. It’s sad

        1. freespirit

          Wow Jasmin how depressing is that! Don’t feel like that lol. I just turned 22 but due to youthful genes (not meaning to be offensive here, but other races tend to age much slower than Caucasian ppl & that’s a real thing). I pass as 17 and people keep thinking my bf (33) dating a teenager. All of this really depresses me as well because men nowadays think women are disposable and a lot of these (younger, trashy) women out here lust after men. Men nowadays have hundreds of women ready to choose from… it’s disgusting. It’s like women are the disposable batteries. What happened to real love?? Longterm relationships, serious commitments that one day you two will get married and have a life together…?? I think this is all because of the decline of the religion & real values.


          So sad… I live in NYC so it’s crazy here, you see everything. As a sidenote to all the older men – Me and my other good looking 21/22 yr old friends say we would not go over 35 at this point in our lives. Also, even though they are not financially set for life– (ALSO AS A SIDENOTE-   in NYC, men as young as 25 are owning tech startups, and the ones around 29 are already owning properties, travelling everywhere, etc. Gone are the days, at least in NY I think, where you need an older man to secure yourself financially as a woman. The only thing is I think younger men aren’t as quick to spoil you financially)–there’s still a charm about dating a musician who’s hot, or an athlete etc… There’s still something about it.

          Just putting in my thoughts here

      3. 8.4.3

        This article seems to be more about sexual fetishes than long term relationships. What is your passion?

      4. 8.4.4

        OMG agreed. If this is what guys are all like, I’m kind of glad to be single…

    5. 8.5

      That’s ridiculous. If the only thing you value in a potential partner is their good looks or an absolute 100% bill of good health, then yes, aging will be cruel to you.

      For the rest of us, who have a better sense of reality and seek more to our relationships than that, we will age happily.

  9. 9

    It is blatantly clear that the vast majority discussing dating, love and relationships at EMK are expressing their desire to meet a man or a woman whom they are strongly physically attracted to. While exploding chemistry, arousal, undeniably is something we all dream about, especially when we are young, it seems to me that is just unrealistic fairy-tale fantasies for middle-aged women and men, respectively, to hope to meet a “hot guy” or a young beatiful woman. It simply won’t happen! My conclusion is that people over 40 and especially 50 should search for a good life-long friendship with a partner. That is realistic. It is not settling. It is simply the only practical solution to the problem of human solitude.

  10. 10

    Well, I might score her much younger little sister even higher for looks. Also, whatever one sister has the other wants. That doesn’t mean I’m insane enough to act on it even if I wanted to. Lust is not everything.

  11. 11

    Eh…I know for a FACT that I am much more physically attractive now at 36 than I was when I was 20. But, let’s say this is true according to the data, like Evan said, so what? Ideally I might be most attracted to men who look like Brad Pitt, but I rarely want to date men that hot IRL…and at the end of the day, the human connection and who you have most in common with (assuming the woman is attractive to you no matter her age) wins out.

  12. 12
    Karl R

    Karmic Equation (#6.1 and #8.1),
    You’ve made a couple statements that are just flat-out wrong.

    My wife is 60 (soon to be 61). I’m 45. Having a 60s/40s age spread in our marriage, I can confidently say that it would be equally possible for a man in his 60s to have a good marriage with a woman in her 40s. I don’t think that kind of age spread is ideal. There can certainly be some age-related issues that occur which wouldn’t in relationships where the ages are closer. But in the grand scheme of things, age just isn’t that big of a deal … unless you make it one.

    A 40s/20s relationship isn’t necessarily a sugar-daddy/gold-digger type relationship. There is going to be *something* setting that man apart from the men who are 20 years younger, but it’s not necessarily going to be money.

    The man in his 50s who is dating a woman in her 20s (the couple that I mentioned earlier) is not wealthy. He’s a dance instructor. He manages to support himself solely as a dance instructor (without having a day job) largely by living a very frugal lifestyle. I suspect that his girlfriend earns at least as much as he does. Possibly more.

    Years ago Evan discussed what makes a man attractive to women:

    This man epitomizes that concept. He’s passionate about dance. He gave up a more lucrative career to become a full-time dance instructor. He’s an exceptional dancer, and an even better dance instructor. He’s somewhat goofy looking, but he’s also charming, funny, and a very nice guy.

    Theo (#6),
    You’re wrong. Some hot men will marry non-fertile women.

    Have you heard of an actor named Hugh Jackman?
    He was previously named the sexiest man alive by People magazine.
    He is 46. His wife is 59. They have two children … both adopted.

    1. 12.1
      Karmic Equation


      You more than anyone should know that the exceptions don’t disprove the rule. Moreover, you do not live a “conventional” lifestyle, and it would stand to reason you would not love conventionally either. How many men enjoy/prefer/choose to be a temp full time at 40+? And quite frankly, how many women would accept such a man as a potential suitor unless they have something else they have passionately in common, like dancing, perhaps? How many never-married men in their 40s consciously choose to be childless? C’mon. You have to recognize that you’re an outlier in many respects and your experiences will also reflect that.

      Only one percent of married couples had a 20 year age difference in 2013. And that number dropped to 0.3% when the wife is 20 years older.

      Certainly if two people meet IRL and become attracted, age often becomes meaningless.

      But with online dating, where we don’t have the opportunity to build rapport in person first, filtering by age is normal and EFFICIENT.

      I’m glad you’re happy Karl. But you’re not doing either men or women any favors by saying your exceptions do disprove the rule. Objective evidence say otherwise.

      1. 12.1.1

        Although not exclusively so, Evan tends to steer his clients towards OLD, the dynamics of which are very different than IRL. From what I understand, Karl had some experience with OLD himself, but he didn’t meet his wife through it. Only Karl can say how his experiences with the two differed.

      2. 12.1.2
        Karl R

        Karmic Equation, (#12.1)
        You’re working off a lot of outdated assumptions. I’ve been working full-time for the same company since 2008, about the same length of time that I’ve known my wife … and about 10 months longer than we’ve been dating.

        That said, quite a few women dated me while I was a temp and/or contractor. I was clearly supporting myself at a decent wage during an economic downturn. For the women I met in real life, my job was never an impediment.

        However, with the checkbox/filter mentality of online dating, Those details make a large difference. If a man is taller, richer, and/or more educated, fewer women will filter him out. A lot fewer. Based on my personal experience, going up an income bracket *tripled* the number of women showing up as a “mutual match”.

        You claim that filtering is “efficient”. Really?

        Lori (#13) isn’t getting any attention from men her age (50s). Instead, she’s getting attention from men in their 60s. She can sit around and WAIT for men in their 50s to write her, or she can go through her inbox and reply to the most attractive, interesting and/or eligible men in their 60s.

        Which is a more efficient and effective use of her time?

        If you look at the filters set by people in their 40s, 50s and 60s, most of the women want to date a man their age or younger. Most of the men want to date someone younger. Using those filters, they mutually exclude each other. It’s very *normal* in online dating … and it’s very efficient at making sure people *don’t* date.

        For younger (or very attractive) people, filtering may reduce the hundreds of potential dates to a smaller, more manageable number. For older (or less desirable) people, filtering usually takes them from a small number of people to none. One of those groups gains efficiency by filtering, the other group loses efficiency.

        I don’t “love unconventionally” (or conventionally, for that matter). However, unlike most people, I eventually dated rather fearlessly. So when I realized (one week) that I could either date a woman 16 years older than me that week, or not date at all that week, I decided to make a pass at the older woman. Either it would go nowhere, or I would have a less boring week.

        That was the “in real life” opportunity to build rapport that eventually led to us getting married.

        How hard is it for someone to look at their inbox and make the same decision? It’s not that big of an investment to email, have a phone call, or go on a date with someone who doesn’t meet your normal criteria.

      3. 12.1.3

        I think some people are missing an important point here, many older men who date younger women are not looking for a long term relationship or remarriage and realize it’s most likely only going to be a short term thing.

        In my case I have no intention of getting married again, state this up front, and routinely date women 10-15 years younger than myself. It’s not a case of some sort of lack of maturity or fear of ‘Strong Independent Women’ , we simply have no “physical desire” for most women our own age.

      4. 12.1.4

        ok now after reading all the comments people say about younger men younger women relationships and everything I’m starting to even wonder why I’m even with my boyfriend.he lives with his parents he’s 51 he can’t drive anymore because he lost his license he is not working right now because business is slow during the winter as I said he looks like he’s between 55 and 60 years old he smokes weed with people half his age he drinks all the time but yet he thinks he can go and pick up any hot little 20 year old and I don’t get it where does he come off thinking this.and I am by no means ugly at all I have blonde hair and green eyes I take care of myself I’m very cute but I’m just not arrogant enough to think at 48 years old that I can go out there and get some 20 something year old hot stud.he on the other hand must to either be extremely arrogant or overly confident because he thinks that every 20 year old is out to jump his bones.If it wasn’t for his outgoing, gregariouspersonality I don’t know if I would even be with him to she’s got a wonderful personality it’s just that he is extremely arrogant and he thinks that I am not attractive because I’m in my forties it’s like a really.I don’t have a problem getting attention.but I really don’t understand men when you have somebody that’s loving compassionate loyal and treat you well by your side why would you even want to have a 20 year old that wants to go out and party and go out tonight clubs and date around why would you want someone like that, that wants some guy to take care of her and buy her way ?

        1. Karl R

          Unless you’re just keeping this guy around as a sex toy, I have to wonder why you’re still with him too. He sounds like a lousy boyfriend, and it sounds like a lousy relationship.

          If you break up with him, then continue to hang around with him as a friend, then you get to enjoy his outgoing, gregarious personality, while still having the opportunity to go out and find someone better. (If the sex is great, then you can suggest being “friends with benefits” instead. Then you can enjoy the sex and his personality … without being tied to a commitment with a lousy boyfriend.)

          ashley said:
          “he thinks that I am not attractive because I’m in my forties”
          “he acts like he’s 20 something years old”
          “he smokes weed with people half his age”
          “he drinks all the time”
          “he on the other hand must to either be extremely arrogant or overly confident”

          You’re drawn to his gregarious, outgoing personality, even though his personality (based on your description) sucks.

          I understand why your boyfriend treats you like crap. He’s a dick. That’s the kind of person he is. Once you realize that he’s a dick, his behavior makes perfect sense.

          I don’t understand why you’re compassionate, loyal, treating him well and by his side. He’s a dick who treats you like crap. His behavior makes sense. Yours completely baffles me.

          Tip for “Nice Guys” with no luck:
          Develop an outgoing and gregarious personality. Ashley’s boyfriend managed to catch and keep a woman who is well out of his league because he was outgoing and gregarious.

          If you’re outgoing and gregarious, you should be able to do better than him, since it’s highly likely that you are better him in almost every measurable way.

  13. 13

    As a single female in my early 50’s I struggle with what I find to be true, men my own age want to date women in their 30’s and 40’s. The men that want to date me are in their 60’s. I’m not attracted to men in that age group.

    1. 13.1

      don’t give up Lori keep looking there are nice guys out there who will accept you for who you are and I’m not going to look at you and say wow she’s 50 something I don’t know if I want to go out with somebody that old I’m 51 and my boyfriend makes me feel like I’m extremely unattractive and I’m used up its 51 because he prefers to look at 20 something year old girls he goes on the computer and talks to them he has a boat so he uses that to attract 20 something year old girlsand he looks much much older than me he looks like he’s in his sixties because of his hard drinking and smoking in this hard life style so don’t be like me don’t settle because you don’t think you can find anybody else you’ll take whatever you can get find that guy thats going to treat you like the princess that you deserve to be treated like.Guys now are days are a bunch of douchebags all they want is arm candy on their arm so everybody will look at them with envy.My boyfriend has this idea because I’m 51 I’m no longer desirable I’m no longer attractive or sexy and he doesn’t have to worry about anybody trying to take me because he would want me and one of these days he’s going to wake up and he’s going to realize he loved somebody that would have been there for him through thick and thin and would have stood by his side from now till eternity and love to him forever and for what to go chase after some 20 something year old girl that just wants to party and get laid really

    2. 13.2

      I am 50. I don’t know of ANY 50 year old American women I am attracted to, physically, spiritually, or emotionally.

  14. 14

    I might sound a little “off” but…..based on my own marital experience (I’m 49yr/o and now happily divorced ), “attractiveness” is unfortunately never enough. No matter how great and wilde (wilder and better through the 16 years of marriage) sex became , there was nothing else meaningful enough for me to stay in that relationship.
    The real and most meaningful “fusion”/Fulfillment cannot be based neither on looks/appearances (hot/short/tall/thin/age) nor (great) sex.
    It all comes down to a spiritual level that enables a unique fusion!

  15. 15

    Thanks for your comments Karl.
    They help me keep the faith. 🙂
    It’s funny but I read comments of women in their 50s about men their age wanting to date younger women and I relate to them a lot. I’m 36 and I am usually interested in men more or less my age.
    I’ve been told by my ex that nobody takes women my age seriously, that men on their 30s and 40s can easily get women on their 20s who are not in a rush of having kids and who of course are hotter.
    I don’t want to believe this bs, ans I’m trying to me keep positive. Still both online and offline, in spite of being often told that I’m attractive, only men 15-20 year older chase me.
    It’s very frustrating. 🙁

    1. 15.1

      Fran, it’s frustrating for all of us. I once had a guy tell me right after sex that “the only reason girls like me can get laid is because men have the ability to close their eyes and pretend they’re with someone hot.” I know that’s supposed to be okay because we’re (supposedly) benefiting from his sexual prowess regardless of who he really wants to be with, but I find it kind of a downer to hear it out loud. According to him, girls like me (I was 42 at the time and I’ve never been a 10) provide some interesting conversation and have usually learned to cook well by our age, but aren’t much good for anything else. Points for honesty, I guess.

      1. 15.1.1
        Karmic Equation

        Oh Wendy. That guy was an ass. A good man will never ever say something like that to a woman. I hoped you dumped the eggs you were cooking on his head and kicked his ass out your door before he uttered another word.

        He does NOT get credit for honesty. He’s a complete and total ass.

        1. Wendy

          Karmic, trust me, he was gone like a fart in the wind after that. I don’t put up with BS. But–I can’t say it doesn’t come back to me now and then when I’m with a new guy and his eyes are tightly closed during the act. True, a good man would never SAY it, but it doesn’t mean he isn’t thinking it and this article seems to prove that point.

        2. Karmic Equation


          I’m sure both men and women think a lot of things we would never say out loud. And think a lot of things we would never do (e.g., rob a bank, tell off our mother in laws, lol).

          So what if a guy thinks it. As long as he has the self control to not say it. That’s all we can ask.

          We often can’t control our own thoughts, feelings, and actions. Why would we demand a man to do something we can’t do ourselves?

      2. 15.1.2

        I’m a guy and what he said to you hurt me. I’m sorry you had to endure that. Us men can some real mean people. Again I’m sorry you had to endure that.

      3. 15.1.3

        “I once had a guy tell me right after sex that “the only reason girls like me can get laid is because men have the ability to close their eyes and pretend they’re with someone hot.”

        Why would you have sex with a guy that you don’t know any better than this?

        I suspect that is part of your problem.

        1. Wendy

          Um, because my crystal ball was in the shop and I didn’t know he was going to say that. Before he made the comment he came across as a great guy, knew all the right things to say. I guess he just wanted to get laid. Sometimes people can’t see through the lies and the charm until it’s too late.

      4. 15.1.4

        Wendy, I’ve met tons of women similar to you.

        And the overarching theme is, they have allowed one guy to destroy their attitude for all men. Now they are no longer able to trust men in general.

        I would suggest it’s not the guy, but a problem with your strategy. Or lack thereof.

        Instead of following and falling for the charm of a guy you don’t know very well. Or guys that you know aren’t good for you.

        Why not get to know him first?

    2. 15.2

      Before I filed for a divorce, my ex-husband told me that he pities me because it is much harder to find a man for a 35 years old woman than for a 37 years old successful and good looking man. 3 years later I live with a hot 31 years old boyfriend who wants to marry me and my ex has a long distance relationship with an unattractive 30 years old woman who just loves his money (he actually complained to me about that) and never cares about him the way I cared about him.
      Be optimistic, go out more, meet new people, smile, project positive energy and men of all ages will chase you. Good luck!!

      1. 15.2.1

        CaliforniaGirl, that’s awesome. I hope you guys have a great future 🙂

      2. 15.2.2

        Wonderful story. Glad things worked out that way. After I read the part where he said to you that you will have a hard time at 35 and it would be easy for him at 37, I was thinking of what I would say back to him. I would say, “well when I was younger, I obviously didn’t find a quality man so I should do better the second time around. As for you, at 37 you’re losing a good woman. Seems like it’s downhill for you from here mate.” But that’s only if he’s one of those guys who doesn’t scream so loud over you so you can’t get a word in.

    3. 15.3

      There are only so many 20 something year olds in the dating pool. That means ALOT of men are competing for them while potentially missing out on something quite valuable. Why they would bother is beyond me, especially when many of them will be out competed and alone because they themselves wasted their good years chasing the unobtainable for most. When I was in my 20’s older men 30+ we’re not on my agenda at all no matter how they approached me.

      I’ve read that for some men it’s about status and not relationship or biology. The young woman is an outward expression of the older man’s conquering prowess, a token. These are men to avoid so a blessing really to be passed over by them.

  16. 16
    Karl R

    Fran, (#15)
    Men in their 30s and 40s may be able to date women in their 20s, but they’re not necessarily dating hotter women.

    The man in his 50s (who I mentioned earlier) has an ex-girlfriend who is almost exactly 20 years older than his current girlfriend. Objectively, I would say the two women are equally attractive. Subjectively, the woman in her 40s is a little closer to my personal tastes.

    When I was dating (in my mid-to-late 30s), I dated women ranging from their 20s to their 50s. The two hottest women were in their 30s. A couple of my dates who were in their 50s were hotter than most of my dates who were in their 20s.

    If a woman is in her 20s, hot, and a decent human being, she can have her choice from a large number of hot, great men in their 20s, 30s and 40s. The remaining available women in their 20s are either less hot, or they aren’t much fun to be in a relationship with.

    And as Tullipes (#14) pointed out, attractiveness isn’t enough. I wanted to dump the most attractive woman I ever dated halfway through our first date. We had already run out of things we could talk about.

    Wendy, (#15.1)
    There’s a difference between honesty and tactlessness. People lose points for tactlessness, and there’s no benefit from dating someone who is that thoughtless. Dump him. Find someone better.

    Lori, (#13)
    I have never dated an age group. I dated individuals.

    As an age group, I don’t find women in their 60s attractive. I can, however, point out several of my friends/acquaintances who are 60+ and quite attractive. I’m married to one of the attractive ones.

    Twinkle (# is correct. People don’t marry someone much older (or shorter, or whatever) out of charity. We do it because we think they’re a great (if unconventional) catch.

  17. 17


    You ex- was putting you down with that kind of remark. You’re only 36. Don’t let your ex- get through you.

    I’m 35, got divorced at 32 from a 13-year marriage. I dated an attorney 3 years my senior but ended the relationship after 1 year because of his drinking problem. Soon after I dated a neuro-surgeon 4 years my senior. The chemistry was great but his temper and control issues were intolerable. I’m currently dating a man my age which I prefer.

    All men I described above can get 20-something. No doubt. They are all very attractive, accomplished and charming. They all told me the same thing though–“most 20-year old women are hot but really what do I have in common with them?”

    Also, it is worth noting these 3 men had all been divorced once and have kids. They all don’t want anymore children. I asked since I’m not looking to date a man who are looking to have more.

    Don’t give up. There are good men out there who want the same thing that you want. Nic~

  18. 18
    Sparkling Emerald

    I think we should file article with the water is wet report. From a purely aesthetic standpoint I think young men are more attractive, but so what ? (As this article is titled . I still rather date fairly closer to my age. Heck, from pure aesthetics, I think women are more attractive than men, but I am straight. Although I have to be attracted to a man to consider a relationship, Aesthetic looks are just a small part of what makes me feel attracted. In fact it is pretty hard for me to judge from a 2D picture if I will be attracted face to face. Just because someone is aesthetically attractive, doesn’t automatically mean I want a relationship with them. I’ve been turned off by attractive guys, and attracted to rather average or unusual looking guys.

  19. 19

    **typo 14 years

  20. 20

    As a 20-something, I have to say, I would hope that age plays less of a factor, and upkeep of your looks and body plays more in the “who’s more attractive” game. I think it isn’t a factor of age, but a factor of how you take care of you body as you age (that goes for men and women, but for women, we obviously have it a little rougher when we add in pregnancy(ies) alone). We’re going to get old, and our bodies are going to change, that’s obvious, but to not age gracefully is going to be anyone’s attrative-level downfall.

    Jillian Micheals is 40yrs old- she’s got a smokin’ hot bod! Christie Brinkley is 60 for the love of God, and, yes, I realize she’s an ex- supermodel, but that doesnt mean there aren’t ways to retain attractiveness for us common-folk. Aside from celebrity examples, which I understand skew a bit because of their “celebrity” and ability to control their aging differently, I’ve seen many absolutely stunning and sexy, everyday 30s or 40-somethings who are in killer shape, don’t “look their age”, and could pull any hot/successful/whatever-type man/woman they very well wanted…looks alone, at least (not talking about relationships here; talking about who’s more attractive). Obviously, with age and maturity in life, it becomes harder to lose weight, stay in shape, eat healthy/go to the gym when you have kids/a family to take care of, but really, there is no excuse for not trying, and if you’re truly trying, you have no reason to not be healthy, much less fit. A healthy body is far more attractive than an unhealthy one. I’d choose any man in healthy/fit shape who actively takes care of himself, regardless of age, over an unhealthy, overweight 25yr old any day (to base on attractiveness, that is, which, again, is what we’re discussing).

    Moral of my spiel is this: Yes, your attractiveness is going to catch someone’s eye; not your age. If I were a man (or hell, even as a straight woman), Jennifer Aniston would catch my eye. Miley Cyrus would, too, but for a completely different reason…Boom- give me Jen over Miley ANY DAMN DAY. Age plays a role ONLY because (most) 20-somethings dont have to work as hard to be as fit and maintain their looks, therefore, they’re declared more attractive. Doesnt mean that with a little extra work in the upkeep of your looks, any 30-40-etc-year old cant be just as, if not more, attractive. And then your personality and character will keep that person around.

    1. 20.1

      Lol at you using extreme outlier examples like Christie brinkley for average women to aspire to

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